Bringing a child into the world is natural. It is not necessarily easy. There can be physical difficulties associated with the mother's pregnancy. Labor can be complicated by many factors. The old African adage says it takes a village to raise a child. It seems to take nearly as large a community to deliver one.
If you have ever seen the play "Fiddler on the Roof" you know that one of its central observations is about tradition. Tradition can be a good thing. It makes everyday life a little less complicated because we don't have to think about the why of our action.
It is not uncommon to hear that the practice of medicine is as much art as it is science. That may have been the case once upon a time, but we suspect that most everyone, even doctors, would agree that the scales of that balance have tipped strongly in favor of science. We have learned an amazing amount in just the last 200 years. And we are learning more new things every day.
How many times have you found yourself saying, "There oughta be a law." It typically surfaces when you are faced with some frustrating situation that you feel should never happen, but does. The thing is there often are laws for such issues. But the situations they cover may occur so rarely that it may be easy to assume they don't.
To err is human, the saying goes. To really screw things up you need a computer. If we presume the truth of that statement, it might be another good reason to give us all pause when we find ourselves having to spend time as a patient in the hospital.
There is no argument from those in health care that there are still problems to overcome to make surgery safer for patients. Despite years of effort to raise awareness and reduce instances of so-called "never events," one analysis in 2012 estimated that preventable surgical errors result in more than 4,000 malpractice claims every year.